A’s Comment

“Some people think it’s holding on that makes one strong- sometimes it’s letting go.” – Unknown

I am not quite sure what exactly A was getting at in his or her comment. It seemed like he or she had not read my post or how I said I welcome my daughters dialog and feelings. I WANT to know them – even if they differ from mine. But of course, A wouldn’t know this because I don’t post what I write my daughter here nor do I post what she writes me.

I also am quite confident that as today, she and I have opposing views on adoption. I don’t get the sense that she is the uber happy adoptee but I do believe she struggles with my position. I believe, perhaps erroneously, that she struggles with it because to truly acknowledge me, she must acknowledge herself, her adoptive parents and the hows and whys and who’s of her birth, surrender, sale and adoption. It is not a pretty story. I don’t begrudge her one bit wanting to avoid it. It is quite painful.

I expect her to have a differing view. We are two different people with two different experiences. She is the child that was surrendered and sold by a broker and I am the mother that allowed that to happen. Regardless of who did what and who was the victim or who hurts more, the entire situation is awful for all concerned. She has to reconcile hers as much as I have to reconcile mine.

Does she have to convert to my way of thinking and fight the beast with me? Of course not. As stated, our reunion and my advocacy work is entwined but they are absolutely separate as well. I have asked no one close to me to pick up my flag and fight to free the mothers and children. I have not made believing like me a condition of my friendship. I have not discarded those with opposing view and GASP! I even have adoptive parent friends. I even dated an adoptive father (and I did not melt or get burned or other).

I don’t want my daughter to believe what I believe or fight what I fight. I want her to respect who I am as much she wants me to respect who she is. If I were a Republican and she a Democrat I would want her to accept that as a difference in us – not a barrier to a relationship. If she was religious and I was not, same rule applies. I don’t want her to be like me.

If we all thought the same, how boring would the world be?

However, I do think A was trying to make a point that I do agree with.

I am a strong personality with strong views and the ability to debate them and stand up for them (at least NOW I am. I cannot say the same for the 18 yo maternity home resident I once was).

I don’t doubt that might be difficult for my daughter. However, I am also confident she is quite the same. If you could see her writing to me, you would agree. She is not a shrinking violet by any means. She is gifted with words, intuitive and incredibly direct – to the point of being hurtful. My own family has said the same about me. (Perhaps my sister will pipe up here and confirm). As much as her view may be difficult to handle at times, it also makes me smile. It is mirroring. Each time I cringe at her forthright nature, I smile. I am reminded of my own mother and the challenges she had (and still has) with me and I smile. She is, no doubt, my daughter.

And that makes me feel great.

4 Thoughts.

  1. I didn’t mean that you expected her to join in your advocacy – I meant more… Imagine that you met a man and started dating. And things were going well. And he asked you out for coffee and you both had a great time, and then he asked you to dinner… and then you found his blog where he had written that you are the love of his life and that you may be too messed up or have too much baggage to realize it but that *hopefully* you would come to realize that you belong together.
    Wouldn’t that mess things up?
    Wouldn’t that make it really impossible for you to go into the dinner date?
    Obviously it’s a stupid analogy – and there are a million differences between that situation and your own… but I can imagine that it must be difficult for her to relate to you when she also has access to this meta-commentary, both explicit (in your blog) and implicit (in the writings about adoptee experiences, primal wound theory, etc., that she knows you subscribe to) that doesn’t line up with her her own thoughts and feelings.
    You are an incredible writer, and I read your blog because you are so talented, and because the subject matter is so compelling. I’m not commenting to criticize you – I think you’re amazing, and I’m only commenting because you keep asking, maybe just rhetorically, how you might better communicate with your daughter. And I think it might help to not publically undermine or publically second guess her feelings or motivations.

  2. A –
    And I think it might help to not publically undermine or publically second guess her feelings or motivations.
    Ah, A, completely different thread from your previous comment.
    Your latest comment is very rich. It has provided a number of writing prompts for me for the week so thank you. I find your passion interesting and your feeling that I am intentionally publicly undermining or secondguessing her feelings or motivations. Interesting choice of words on your part and I am left wondering what I triggered for you personally that you would delurk with such passion on this topic.
    You are alluding to a very real challenge of both bloggers and even activists. It is also a reference to the internet, social media, writing, privacy laws and much more. But I can get to that during the week.
    I dont usually engage in dialogue or two way commentary but you raise some very valid issues that concern bloggers and activists like myself. I want to discuss this further. Kristy commented on it in her own comment about shutting down her own blog for fear that her daughter might find out how she really felt.
    Oh, and your analogy of the guy/woman dating as amusing. Something strikingly simliar DID happen to me quite recently. I will draw from the experience in my upcoming writings.

  3. As a mom in reunion since Jan ’90 I relate very strongly to A’s comment as you quoted it. Particularly the “…second guess her feelings or motivations.”
    Second guessing between me and my daughter has been an obstacle in our relationship. Putting energy into second guessing each other has the effect of building walls rather than bridges.
    Speaking as a work in progress and wishing you both well.

  4. Excellent point, Justice. Second guessing and making assumptions (on both sides) has affected my relationship with my son.
    A — I don’t think that’s what Suz has been doing in regards to her daughter, so much as ruminating about the causes of her silence and reactions or lack thereof. I’m sure she would be thrilled not to have to guess.
    As for the “publicly part,” the only thing public is Suz’s thoughts and feelings. Her daughter’s identity is not known.

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